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Steve Lafleur

Senior Policy Analyst, Fraser Institute

Steve Lafleur is Senior Policy Analyst at the Fraser Institute. He holds an M.A. in Political Science from Wilfrid Laurier University and a B.A. from Laurentian University where he studied Political Science and Economics. He was previously a Senior Policy Analyst with the Frontier Centre for Public Policy in Winnipeg, and is a Contributing Editor to New Geography. His past work has focused primarily on housing, transportation, local government and inter-governmental fiscal relations. His current focus is on economic competitiveness of jurisdictions in the Prairie provinces.  His writing has appeared in every major national and regional Canadian newspaper and his work has been cited by many sources including the Partnership for a New American Economy and the Reason Foundation.

Recent Research by Steve Lafleur

— Jan 26, 2017
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Alberta's Budget Deficit: Why Spending is to Blame, 2017

Alberta’s Budget Deficit: Why Spending Is To Blame, 2017 finds that the Alberta government could have posted a small budget surplus this year instead of a $10.8 billion deficit if successive governments had kept program spending increases in line with population growth and inflation.

— Jan 5, 2017
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The End of the Alberta Tax Advantage finds that corporate and personal income tax hikes in Alberta last year have wiped away the crucial tax advantage that helped fuel the province’s economic prosperity for years. Corporate tax rates are now lower in B.C., Ontario and Quebec, and Alberta’s top combined marginal personal income tax rate went from the lowest in North America to the 16th highest among all province and states.

— Nov 17, 2016
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One Energy Boom, Two Approaches: Fiscal Restraint Has Left Texas in Better Shape than Alberta

One Energy Boom, Two Approaches: Fiscal Restraint Has Left Texas in Better Shape than Alberta finds that Alberta’s deficits and mounting debt are largely the result of undisciplined spending and fiscal mismanagement, not just a drop in energy prices. By comparison, Texas controlled spending during the energy boom of 2004 to 2014, and, partly as a result, ran five straight surpluses between fiscal years 2009 and 2013. Alberta, which increased spending at a greater rate than Texas, ran four deficits during that same five-year period, and has continued to run deficits in the years since, with the exception of a small surplus in 2014/2015. Further, Alberta doesn’t expect to balance the budget again until at least 2024.